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that white house chief of staff, dennis mcdunn, speaking to jake tapper, if, and i underscore if, these reports are substantiated, it is his word. the president said the use of chemical weapons by the assad regime would be his red line. of course, we would have to see what kind of action the president would then take. and the white house, again, watching this very closely. we don't have comment from them at this point beyond what white house chief of staff dennis mcdone now said to jake tapper. he said if substantiated, it would be a game changer, not backing down from that language that this is still the president's red line. so we would expect to hear more from the president on that while he's here in israel, when we get more details on these reports. >> jessica, this is a big trip that president obama is taking. we will be watching this while he is there. talk to us about the timing of the trip. why now? >> yeah, it's an excellent question. it's left a lot of people here confused. this trip is rich in symbolism, but it's questionable what the president can achieve here strateg
joking around with dennis rodman. the united states, the obama administration, right now taking the north's threats of a nuclear attack very seriously. the pentagon has just announced it will beef up america's defense missile systems out on the west coast. in california, oregon, washington state. let's go straight to cnn's pentagon correspondent chris lawrence, watching what's going on. chris, a lot of us are stunned by this decision but update us on what is going on. >> wolf, we just came out of a briefing where we learned the pentagon is going to spend a billion dollars to put new intercepter missiles on the west coast. now, that plan includes react investigating a missile field that the obama administration deactivated just a few years ago when it concluded that north korea didn't pose enough of a threat. if a nuclear missile is ever fired at the united states, this is the best hope to stop it. 30 interceptor missiles which can be launched from ground silos in alaska and california. now the pentagon is deploying up to 14 more. >> the reason we're doing what we're doing and the reason w
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